New Orleans to Pensacola at high risk from Katrina

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:05 PM GMT on August 27, 2005

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The Hurricane Hunters measured a central pressure of 949 mb at 11:14am EDT, up from the cental pressure of 941 mb measured at 7:07am EDT. Concentric eyewalls with diameters of 13 and 40 nm were reported, satellite images show that the eye has filled in with clouds and the cloud top temperatures have warmed. These observations indicate that an eyewall replacement cycle has begun. This was expected, since the 7:07am Hurricane Huneter report indicated that the eye diameter had shrunk to 9 nm, about the smallest diameter one gets before an eyewall replacement cycle begins.

The maximum winds may fall below 115 mph while Katrina undergoes this eyewall replacement cycle, as the inner eyewall collapses and a new outer eyewall forms. This would make Katrina a strong Category 2 storm, and indeed the maximum winds seen so far by the Hurricane Hunters were only 87 knots (100 mph) at 10,000 feet. This is a temporary affliction, since Katrina is in nearly ideal conditions for strengthening, and is expected to reach Category 4 status by Sunday. The convection and outflow are starting to look better on the north side of the hurricane, and Katrina should have a more symmetrical shape typical of Category 4 hurricanes by Sunday. As seen in the cumulative wind image below, Katrina has increased markedly in size the past 12 hours, and will deliver a widespread damaging blow wherever she comes ashore.



The favorable intensification conditions for Katrina are expected to last up until landfall, when some increase in shear may occur. Intensification forecasts are highly unreliable, though, and it would be no surprise if Katrina were a Category 2, 3, or 4 landfall. The track forecast is getting more believable, as Katrina's westerly motion shows that it has begun it recurvature, pretty much where NHC and the models were predicting. A landfall between New Orleans and Pensacola is on track for Monday morning or afternoon. I expect a Category 3 storm at landfall.

I'd hate to be an Emergency Management official in New Orleans right now. Katrina is pretty much following the NHC forecast, and appears likely to pass VERY close to New Orleans. I'm surprised they haven't ordered an evacuation of the city yet. While the odds of a catastrophic hit that would completely flood the city of New Orleans are probably 10%, that is way too high in my opinion to justify leaving the people in the city. If I lived in the city, I would evacuate NOW! There is a very good reason that the Coroner's office in New Orleans keeps 10,000 body bags on hand. The risks are too great from this storm, and a weekend away from the city would be nice anyway, right? GO! New Orleans needs a full 72 hours to evacuate, and landfall is already less than 72 hours away. Get out now and beat the rush. You're not going to have to go to work or school on Monday anyway. If an evacuation is ordered, not everyone who wants to get out may be able to do so--particularly the 60,000 poor people with no cars.

Dr. Jeff Masters

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981. USAmet
11:22 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
saymobeel, i would think they would close here... i know south is supposed to announce closing tomorrow at noon sometime so that usually means the pub schools will be too... and with mobile still being in the cone and on the east side we are definitely in the heat of this. Also this northern swing as of late should keep it on a path to NO or east of it.
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980. Orleans77
11:23 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Local TV is saying that evacuatuon is rushed as they did not know until this morning that NO was at risk...where were these people last nite???
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979. tmichelle1979
7:23 PM EDT on August 27, 2005
Mobile Schools

I haven't heard yet if they all will be closed but the Alabama School of Math and Science is closed. They have the ticker going on one of the weather channels (15 I think). Check that one for a better answer on this.
Tara
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976. EZMonster
11:23 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Humongo, it did the same thing to Cuba and the Yucatan, grew over them even while it was moving away
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975. leftyy420
11:23 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
i think i got into a 2 hr disscussion on how this storm would be huge and i said we wills ee
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
974. JaxAdjuster
11:23 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Yep. I remember you saying that Lefty. And it has turned out to be true. Will it keep growing? The biggest storm I remember was gilbert. I remember that thing taking up the entire gulf.
973. Orleans77
11:22 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
the storm is huge
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972. JaxAdjuster
11:22 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Lefty, you know the game. Stop responding the them.
971. leftyy420
11:22 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
jax remeber my comments last night on how this storm would grow
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
970. Orleans77
11:20 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Lefty dont pay any attention to them
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969. JaxAdjuster
11:19 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Man, this storm is growing. I was just looking at the satelite photo. As the storm was moving away from Florida, the convection was increasing so much that it was growing back over florida while the storm was moving away! That's some major storm growth.
968. leftyy420
11:21 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
why would i want you on my friends list
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
967. SaymoBEEL
6:09 PM CDT on August 27, 2005
Has anyone from the Mobile area heard if they are closing schools on Monday. I'm sure they will. But, they will wait until the last bloody minute. I have had several teachers ask me because they can't find out anything. Right now, TS force winds extend 160 miles from the center.
NOLA is about 130 miles from here. I suggest the Mobile county public school system "do the math". Also I will go out on a limb and predict the schools will close. So plan on having the kids(as well as yourself) home on Monday. If anyone says anything, justtell them you read a report on the internet (wink, wink).
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966. boiredfish
11:19 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
I'm glad to finally be seeing a litle northward movement in her track. Took long enough.....lol.... but feel for the folks in La.....get out of the way of this thing.....thoughts and prayers are with y'all.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 442
964. EZMonster
11:11 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
The eye reconsolidation states the eye form as:

E12/40/30

If I understand these, that means an elliptical (120 degree eye) of 40 x 30 nmiles. That could be good news if the other 40 starts coming down to the 30 (and then continuing on to lower #'s)(i.e., not a doughnut), but no matter what here comes the real strengthening, because concentric playtime is over.

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963. SouthernLady
11:16 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Dryfly, yes the river is way low...
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962. ELLSSUU
11:15 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Usually this time of year the river is low. It would take a whole lot to make the Mississippi overflow it's banks around here. I'm sure there are flood basin plans in place to divert water into the lake if the need arrised.

Now if their property is on one of the many other rivers around here that don't have the protections that the Mississippi have then they may indeed flood.
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961. TybeeIslandGA
11:16 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Diggin' in right now thanks for ALL you do lefty. By the way I did get the webcast thing worked out. Thanks for your time my friend!!
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960. leftyy420
11:17 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
but anyway. if somepeopeldon't want me in here maybe i should just find another blog. i don't know why i conitnue to think the treatment in here would get any better.
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
958. AySz88
7:13 PM EDT on August 27, 2005
I think it's just because he dropped the quotation marks and used the word "that" instead. Back to Katrina, again, please.
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957. stmarylalady
10:52 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Here is a link that might be helpful. It is to the Louisiana Citizen Awareness and Disaster Evacuation Guide Link

Here are some numbers that might be useful also:
State Police Road Closure Hotline:
1-800-469-4828
Shelter Information:
Red Cross- 1(866)-GET-INFO (438-4636)

Here is some other info:
Emergency Shelter Information Points:
Tourist Welcome Center, US 65 & 84, 1401 Carter St. (US 84), Vidalia, LA
Tourist Welcome Center, TA Truck Stop, Tallulah Exit (Hwy 65 & I 20)
Paragon Casino, 711 Paragon Place, Marksville LA
Sammy's Truck Stop, I-49, Exit 53, 3601 LA 115W, Bunkie, LA
Med Express Office, 7525 US 71, Alexandria, LA
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956. IKE
11:12 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Looking at the latest visible...she hasn't moved much west...but slightly north. Looking at the wator vapor you can see clouds in SE Texas and SW LA racing northeastward, which kind of indicates Katrina can't go west of there. She may turn north sooner than the NHC is predicting. It'll be interesting to see a wator vapor loop in a few hours to see if these clouds racing northeast can progress further east.
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955. Joshfsu123
11:12 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
If she is already turning NW, that puts her to the right of the track guidance and thus, you should expect a landfall to the east of New Orleans.

However, this movement today could have been caused by the eyewall replacement cycle and could start moving more WNW tonight after the cycle is completed to get back on track.

However, the TROF is now approaching the Gulf of Mexico so movement to the West seems to be possible but limited now. A due West path you shouldn't see any longer and that TROF will make the WNW, if it starts that tonight, to be short lived.
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954. leftyy420
11:14 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
yeah we mentioned al;l that and provided links but there has been exceptions to all those rules.thats why i said if we don't see the eye getting any smaller soon it would be a possibilty. make sure u read all the posts and all the links we provided while we disccused it thank you
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
953. dryfly
11:07 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Question for NOLA folks... is the river low? I live waaaaaay north of NOLA on the river... many hundreds of miles... and it is very low up here... my sis & BIL have property in NOLA so I kinda watch this pretty close... Plus I went through Camille as a kid but inland... wind & rain where we were but only flooding was a real problem.

I was wondering because if flooding is an issue upstream that could seriously complicate matters (clean up)... but if the river is as low as it is now in my area... it would take A LOT of rain to create a general flood... we have with navigation it is so low.

Anyone know?
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952. leftyy420
11:13 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
it was suppose to be what cat would be saying to himslef. as a thought thats why i used he there. read it again and u will see it now makes sense
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
951. pseabury
11:03 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Building levees is a big reason why the city is such a disaster waiting to happen in the first place. Look at that sickly delta and all of the sediment that rockets out into the Gulf because of those levees. Had we allowed the river to keep it's floodplain, there'd be much more of South Louisiana today where there's only open water. Money, port, and shipping has kept us maintaining the river system in this state. Sad really that short term dollar signs put millions in danger long term.

Member Since: May 28, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3
949. Orleans77
11:11 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
I see your point Cosmic...referring to himself as he not I..still i think its a typo and wish you would refrain from wasting the blog's time on this..can you contrinute something positive to the disucssion of what this hurricane will do?? If not please do not waste our time...
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948. leftyy420
11:11 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
and my name is not lenny. its michael ryan campbell sr.
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
947. TybeeIslandGA
11:11 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
We get rid of 27windows and now we have another tard. C'mon people.
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946. Orleans77
11:09 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
ok..kewl..lets just concetrate on what is really important Cat...dont worry bout the "fakes" rather feel sorry for them and move on
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945. CosmicEvents
11:05 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
This is a sad lonely, Internet obsessed individual we're dealing with. Just disgusting when you have this person cluttering up a blog when there are so many scared affected newcomers looking for real advice.
.
.
Multiple personality???? Judge for yourself. Does a normal person refer to themselves in this way.
.
.
Posted By: leftyy420 at 11:03 PM GMT on August 27, 2005.
what is wrong with u catchaser. did ur mommy drop u on ur head. i am not anybody but lefty. its my aol screenname. its my xbox gamertag. i wish you could compare ip addresses cause than u would realise that damn he isn't stormt, or msy
.
.
.Lenny...it's time to go away. Please.
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944. TybeeIslandGA
11:08 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Are there any forseen obsticles yet that could cut her down?
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943. FLPhil
11:08 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Thats pretty funny TampaSteve, its like Cantore's a magnet for these storms or something.
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942. Orleans77
11:06 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
thnks...was supposed to return to school tomorrow but am gonna wait, especially after my folks told me i want going back until after
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940. leftyy420
11:05 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
well lloks like that eye will not be big good sign, also she appers to have made a more sugn turn towards the wnw or nw. she is exploding with convection and she could be a cat 4 in about 6 hrs
Member Since: August 24, 2005 Posts: 35 Comments: 1987
939. Hawkeyewx
6:06 PM CDT on August 27, 2005
According to the latest recon report, the center of Katrina in the last two hours has moved 0.2 degrees northward and 0.0 degrees westward, so there has indeed been a slight wobble to the north.
Member Since: July 5, 2005 Posts: 2 Comments: 1924
938. bigpoppapascagoula
6:05 PM CDT on August 27, 2005
Harrison County Mississippi Storm Shelters
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937. dryfly
10:59 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Orleans77... BR will be mostly fine even if a direct hit south of it and runs over the top... maybe a few trees, some roofs maybe a tornado or two at worst. When Camille hit and it was as bad as it gets... inland 100 or so miles it was rain & high wind, damage but not terrible... the coast was trashed - ask folks who were in Pass Christian... barrier islands and cities on the coast were all but gone..

If this storm intensifies that much and I seriously doubt it will be even close... then where it makes landfall will have trouble... LSU not so much.
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936. Orleans77
11:05 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Id guess alot worse if it hits direct as a Cat 5
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935. ELLSSUU
11:01 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Any thoughts on how LSU will fare??

Hopefully they'll get 11 wins................ooops sorry wrong subject.

Truthfully, I've been at LSU during a Hurricane. Trees down and power outages for a week or two are real possibilities. We had 2 weeks with no power.

Winds there get into T.S. force.
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934. Hawkeyewx
6:05 PM CDT on August 27, 2005
378
URNT12 KNHC 272257
VORTEX DATA MESSAGE
A. 27/22:44:30Z
B. 24 deg 49 min N
085 deg 36 min W
C. 700 mb 2604 m
D. NA kt
E. NA deg nm
F. 287 deg 083 kt
G. 207 deg 028 nm
H. EXTRAP 944 mb
I. 12 C/ 2745 m
J. 19 C/ 2746 m
K. 12 C/ NA
L. RAGGED
M. E12/40/30
N. 12345/ 7
O. 0.02 / 2 nm
P. AF306 WX12A KATRINA01 OB 12
MAX FL WIND 101 KT E QUAD 21:38:40 Z
SLP EXTRAP FROM 700 MB
RAGGED EYE STRUCTURE APPEARS TO BE CONSOLIDATING
Member Since: July 5, 2005 Posts: 2 Comments: 1924
932. Orleans77
11:03 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
CAT could we seriously concentrate on the matter at hand?? youre the one hogging all the blog "space" here with your idiotic nonesense...Sounds very much like you are in dire need of "attention" ..no enoguh already please
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931. TybeeIslandGA
11:00 PM GMT on August 27, 2005
Lefty...I had to leave for a few hours. So What is the lastest "in a nut shell". Stronger, weaker, track, forcasted strength? THEN i will try to catch up on all the "details" above. Thanks Man!!
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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